Tuesday, September 7, 2010

What does former Coconut Grove activist and current City of Miami Commissioner Marc Sarnoff and the Plantation cops charged with $16mm worth of mortgage fraud have in common?

You all recall the federal mortgage fraud indictment a few months back involving the Plantation cops don't you?  One part of the indictment that stuck out was the following...
"submitting and causing to be submitted materially false and fraudulent mortgage applications and settlement statements"
One of the most serious charges leveled was lying on a mortgage application or mortgage documents, something most of our readers who commented agreed was relatively minor in light of everything else that was going on during the real estate meltdown.  The feds among other things accused the cops of lying to the lenders about the homes in question being their primary residence, by doing so, they enjoyed lower interest rates and perhaps made it easier to qualify for the loans.  If nothing else, we've now established that if the feds want you, they'll indict you for simply lying about your primary residence on a mortgage.

With that said, let's say hello to city of Miami Commissioner Marc David Sarnoff, the man who came into prominence through his unsuccessful fight against Home Depot in Coconut Grove.  While he failed to keep Home Depot out of Coconut Grove, he did succeed in getting elected to the City Commission on the "Save the Grove" platform, all good, but it seems like Mr. Sarnoff has made a ton of enemies along the way, in fact there are several blogs dedicated to bringing about Mr. Sarnoff's demise, most recently a blog named Investigation Miami unearthed some disturbing facts regarding Mr. Sarnoff's homes, his mortgages and his "primary residence".  From the Investigation Miami blog...
  • 1993 Marc DAVID Sarnoff (MDS) buys a property at 3197 Virginia Street (down the street from 3100 Virginia) and uses it has his law office, per official State of Florida filings through at least 5/21/2001.  The mortgage requires 3197 Virginia to be his primary residence.
  • July 1998 MDS purchases a townhouse at 3000 Shipping Avenue.  He uses this unit as his illegal law office beginning at least 5/12/2002 per official State of Florida filings.  The signature page on the mortgage lists his address as 3000 Shipping Avenue.  This mortgage requires 3000 to be his primary residence.  So now there are two  mortgages that require the property to be his primary residence.  He isn't married yet so, guess he is living in both places.

  • April 2000 MDS purchases a townhouse at 3100 Virginia Street.  The Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac qualifying mortgage requires him to use 3100 as his primary residence.  So now he has three mortgages on three properties, each of which require the liened property to be his primary residence.

  • October 2001 MDS refinances mortgage of 3197 Virginia Street.  Whoa, Nellie, we're back to the beginning.   This mortgage also requires 3197 to be his primary residence and look at the signature!  That's exactly where he lives according to the signature page of this new mortgage!

  • June 2002  MDS refinances mortgage at 3100 Virginia Street.  And holy shit!  He's moving again!  The mortgage requires 3100 Virginia Street to be his primary residence, and daddy, it is! It is!

  • January 2006   The 3100 Virginia mortgage was refinanced with the address of both Teresa and Marc DAVID (they were married in 2001 according to his campaign website, and May 19, 2002 per the MDC clerk's records - another weird tidbit that is beside the point for this post).

RUT RO!!!!

Does anyone else see the problem there?  Any difference between this and what the Plantation cops were charged with?  Do you think our favorite "veteran economic crimes prosecutor" is on top of this one?  Don't hold your breath.  

Great work Investigation Miami, keep it coming!

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